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Match Report: Bolton Wanderers 1-1 Blackpool

Our incoherent rabble manage to scrape an embarrassing point with the last kick of the game against the worst team the Championship has ever seen.

Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

Neil Lennon picked a team that I think most fans would have been happy with. Home game only attendees got to see what all the fuss what about with Rochinha, which turned out to be absolute nothing.

Tom Walker was afforded the opportunity to continue his run in the team, Ben Amos played his last game in between the sticks before his return to Old Trafford and Neil Danns returned after his suspension and ten days clocking up enough air miles to win an indefinite stay on Richard Branson's private island.

The game started with some long range efforts from wannabe celebrity Jamie O'Hara and jailbird Gary Madine failing to test Amos before a spell of enterprising football from us. Then our expectation as to when and not if we would take the lead was brought shuddering to a halt in the 10th minute.

Michael Jacobs, the on-loan Wolves winger, scampered onto a lofted ball from fat boy O'Hara that somehow caught out all of our dozy back line. He waited until the ball dropped perfectly for him to volley a scorching strike past Ben Amos at his near post that rightly drew applause from some of the fair minded individuals in the Macron crowd.

This bombshell caused us to go to sleep at first as first Andrea Orlandi then Peter Clarke missed presentable opportunities to extend their lead. These eventually sparked the Whites into life and we were soon pushing hard for an equalising goal, without any real conviction that we would score it.

Liam Feeney shot straight at Joe Lewis in the Seasiders goal from an acute angle, Matt Mills had a header from a corner that ended up at perennial non-scorer Tim Ream's feet, who continued his fruitless search for a first Bolton goal by wasting two bites of the cherry on the rebound. Then Paddy McCarthy really should've scored from another Barry Bannan corner, planting a free header near enough Lewis' fingertips to give him the opportunity to pull off an excellent goal-saving parry.

Still Blackpool had half-chances to take a two goal advantage into the break as the game ebbed and flowed.
Wanderers were unable to put their stamp on the game, with Bannan's ultra optimistic 40 yarder not testing Lewis in the slightest. If only we had Charlie Adam instead...

Rochinha was finding small pockets of space but then doing precisely nothing with them as one brush of contact to his slight frame and he was on the deck and the ball in Tangerine possession yet again.

I don't think I've ever seen a more gutless and cowardly performance from a player that I was expecting to be dazzled by, and I include Rob Hall vs Bury in that category. Let's hope it was a really bad off day for the player who burst onto the scene at Portman Road to such acclaim recently.

Just after the half hour mark Tom Walker went on a purposeful run down the right, after earlier swapping wings with Feeney. His cut back was cut out in the nick of time however and the corner came to nothing.

As the half drew to a close, Josh Vela made a superb last ditch tackle on goalscorer Jacobs after his electric pace had seen him get two yards clear of our young makeshift full-back at one point. The tackle was the type that if mistimed, may have resulted in a red card as well as a penalty. Luckily Josh was spot on and the ensuing corner was dealt with.

Bannan was at the heart of some decent attacking endeavour, driving us forward but with little end product as an O'Hara free-kick that went onto the roof of the net proving the last act of an extremely frustrating, yet pretty open first half of football as the boos rang out from the Macron faithful.

The home dressing room may not have been a place for the feint hearted as Lennon presumably made Rochinha undertake an hours worth of weight training as he was hauled off for Emile Heskey, his trusty lieutenant told to lead the line and assist Le Fondre, who had been given precious little scraps to feed off.

The first few minutes of the second half were uninteresting, mainly because I was still queuing at our Godawful food stands for a much needed burger. That aside, we continued to look for a way back into the game but the final ball was perpetually eluding us with every groan from the crowd seemingly sapping the life force from our motley crew.

Each simple five yard pass was getting harder to execute as Blackpool began to time waste after 55 minutes had elapsed. Gary Madine played a crucial role in this by holding the ball up intelligently, winning free-kicks and throw-ins that were taking a minute apiece to complete.

On the hour mark we burst out of our funk with Bannan's driven ball nodded back by big Emile to Walker, who perhaps should have spotted Le Fondre's clever run but instead struck a reasonable effort that Lewis beat away, Le Fondre unable to get to the rebound first.

After this rousing moment we stepped up the gears as Le Fondre flashed a shot wide and our corner count rose.
Then Bannan contrived to pass up an almost unmissable chance to score his first Bolton goal and give us the equaliser we were beginning to deserve. The Scot placed his effort against the outside of the post after Le Fondre's intelligent reverse pass left him just 6 yards out with at least a third of the goal to aim at. A truly awful miss.

Shortly after, Craig Davies entered the fray for a tiring Walker and made a decent impact immediately.

With Heskey shifted to the left, Davies' brute like presence and his unselfish runs into channels gave the Blackpool centre backs Clarke and O'Dea the headaches they had managed to avoid up until that point, due to the poor service to Le Fondre they had easily dealt with.

Ream had another two chances to shoot when the ball fell to him again after our umpteenth corner but he twice tried to find a White shirt in a crowded penalty area and the chance was gone. Just go for the goal zone next time Tim.

It really looked as if the goal would never come as first Davies shot over the bar from the edge of the area and then, after Gudjohnsen finally came on to lend his class to such chaotic proceedings, an almighty goalmouth scramble involving Le Fondre ended up with him trying to turn the ball home amongst two or three prone Blackpool players to no avail.

The Tangerines were certainly living dangerously as the end of normal time approached. Another unbelievable chance was spurned, not once, not twice but three times as McCarthy headed the ball down from Bannan's immaculate corner, Lewis stopping it on the line. Matt Mills followed up with yet another defender blocking it, again on the line before Le Fondre tried to turn it home and again saw his effort blocked on the bastard line.

Spanish midfielder Cubero then produced an astounding miss after Blackpool had broke 3 on 1, at first showing great poise and composure to put himself in a position where he only had to stroke the ball into either corner. Instead he blasted the ball into his team's fans behind the goal.

The four minutes added on seemed especially generous on Blackpool, given their time wasting antics, yet thankfully it proved enough as we almost contrived to miss yet another bona fide sitter. Bannan's intelligent ball from the left by-line was headed back into the area by Heskey when it was easier to score with no-one around him.

All I can think of is he may of been worried about colliding with the back post. The ball luckily fell at Danns' feet, swinging his leg at it which diverted the ball into the ground and up and over Lewis towards the corner of the net.

Just to make sure, wily old fox Eidur stuck his bonce on it and the net finally rippled. Once the linesman's flag had been checked an outpouring of relief came forth from the players and the crowd.

The referees whistle sounded immediately after kick-off and this roller coaster of a game was brought to a close.

My overwhelming feeling is that the game had as much quality as the Dog and Duck versus The Hare and Hounds and we played with such little conviction that it almost appeared we were trying not to score, a point repeated by Lennon in his post-match press conference.

Yet the fact our individual and collective heads did not drop despite the frustrating nature of the game means we have to see this obviously disappointing result as a positive in the end due to the late, late rescuing of the point.

Onto Wales we go and a game against our overlords Cardiff City, with Adam Le Fondre ineligible. Ben Amos said his goodbyes with an uncharacteristically shaky performance yesterday as the Ginger Wotsit will surely make his return in goal.

Let's get a positive result lads, come on you White men!!